SmackDown Live, also known as the blue brand of WWE, is a two-hour long weekly sports entertainment program. From the 4th of October 2019, SmackDown will move to FOX on Friday Nights, from the USA Network. In addition to this broadcast home, the show is broadcast internationally across continents on a variety of networks just like WWE’s other showcase brand Monday Night RAW. WWE SmackDown is also the second-longest-running weekly television series in American history, right behind RAW.
WWE RAW which began in 1993 has always been the A-brand and the flagship show for the company. The Monday Night Wars began when WCW began to counter-program WWE RAW with WCW Nitro in 1995. At the very height of the Monday Night Wars, with WWE, WCW would launch yet another show called Thunder in 1998. SmackDown! was WWE’s way to counter Thunder with their own dose of two-hour programming, starting in April 1999.
At the outset it was assumed that this would be a show only filled with WWE divas, but in time, the idea was dropped, and it became a second brand for WWE. The Attitude Era was also the first and only time in history when WWE had two faces instead of one, in Steve Austin and The Rock, and SmackDown was often referred to as the latter’s show, based on the fact that ‘laying the Smack Down’ would be something that he would say.
The brand extension
WCW shut shop in the year 2001 and a whole host of WCW Superstars would sign with WWE, where the roster became far too stacked. Because the roster was so full, and because Vince McMahon believed that he would have to create his own competition, RAW and SmackDown Live became separate brands in the year 2002, with what’s known as the brand extension.
This would continue all the way up to the year 2011, when the brand split was effectively dissolved. But then once again in the year 2016, the rosters would be split into WWE RAW and SmackDown Live, with superstars becoming exclusive to their brand. This would be diluted in a sense, with the Wild Card Rule, which is something implemented by Vince McMahon where a set number of performers from one brand could show up on another.
These WWE Champions defend their Championships at PPVs, SmackDown tapings and WWE Live Events, based on existing storylines. The SmackDown schedule is truly rigorous and just as difficult as the one RAW superstars follow.
SmackDown would celebrate its 1000th episode in 2018, which was a special affair filled with stars from the past. Evolution, The Undertaker, Edge, Rey Mysterio, and others would show up and celebrate the grand occasion. The seeds for the WrestleMania match between Triple H and Batista would be sown at the event.
SmackDown General Managers
There have been many authority figures in SmackDown history with Stephanie McMahon, Vickie Guerrero, Paul Heyman and Booker T being the most prominent ones in the whole lot. But perhaps nobody left a bigger impression on the brand than Theodore Long, a man who became synonymous with the blue brand.
Shane McMahon became the Commissioner of SmackDown Live in the year 2016, and under his reign, there were two major General Managers. The first was Daniel Bryan, who would relinquish his position to the second GM, Paige after he returned to in-ring competition at WrestleMania. In addition to the Superstars and the authority figures, the cast also consists of on-air personnel like announcers, ring-announcers and timekeepers, in addition to a backstage crew.
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SmackDown Live results will go up immediately after the show concludes, and a live card brings you all the action as it happens, in case you happen to miss the same. Once the show is done, a ‘Best and Worst’ analysis article will go up with comprehensive coverage of what went down on SmackDown.
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